I am a child and adolescent psychiatrist who has been in practice for 34 years. Over the years I have been involved in many projects and issues nationally and regionally. At this stage in my career, I want to move away from full time care of patients and devote part of my time training and assisting others who work under more severe restrictions of time and training while attempting to treat children with mental health and behavioral problems.
I grew up in an academic family. My father was a very well know research veterinarian. I spent my first year in school in a small town in Holland where my father worked restoring Dutch cattle and swine herds. All of us were expected to do well and we enjoyed the approval of our parents when we did. Math and science were my forte. I started college with the idea of becoming an academic researcher like my father, an idea that stayed with me even after entering medical school. Along the way, I became enchanted with child psychiatry and have never looked back.
After completeing my child psychiatry training at UW, I opened a private practice nearby. It seemed odd to me that there was no state organization for child psychiatrists, even though there were a substantial number. I called several of those whom I considered community leaders to discuss this with them and out of those discussions arose the Washington State Council of Child (now including "and Adolescent") Psychiatry. That began a long involvement with medical organizations. Eventually I became quite involved with the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, taking on a sequence of leadership roles. I was nominated for President Elect in 2001 but lost in a close election. Although I have continued to be active at the national level, I have become concerned about the increasing prevalence of serious psychiatric and developmental problems in children and the dearth of well trained professionals to treat these children. Because primary care physicians and nurse practitioners are now assessing and treating roughtly 75% of the mental health problems in children coming to medical attention, I spent several years developing a state-wide training and support service for PCPs which, although initially funded by the State, fell victim to "The Great Recession."
I have been married for forty years and have two adult children and one grandson. Although I have many outside interests, performing music is taking up an increasing amount of time. I play tenor trombone with the Sound Brass Quintet and the Rain City Symphony. I recently had my first, and perhaps last, opportunity to perform a concerto with a full orchestra.